If you’ve been wondering about Watson, our blind dog …

Me untangling the long leash before we start. Watson still likes to carry the leash. A bad habit in other dogs, he uses it like a rein to help "stay in touch".
Me untangling the long leash before we start. Watson still likes to carry the leash. A bad habit in other dogs, he sometimes uses it with light tension, like a rein, to help “stay in touch”. Photos by Gregg Doster

Watson continues to astound us. Gregg made a long leash out of an old plastic nylon rope for Watson and he goes just about anywhere on the property. Here Watson is taking a dip in the pond in our hot weather. I keep the leash on Watson most of the time, but especially in the pond in case he gets into trouble and needs rescuing.

Hearing guides this blind dog

Watson relies on hearing to help guide him and if a situation suddenly becomes explosive, too many loud sounds are confusing. Watson does love the water and also has his own wading pool in the dog pen.

Leash cues he’s learned so far:

“Far enough” = Very soon  you will hit the end of the rope. Quit accelerating. Maintain current distance.
“Uh, uh!” = Halt, swerve. Do not move forward. You are about to hit something.
“This way” = Proceed in the direction of my voice.
“Doing great.” = All is well. Just me on audio check-in.
“Wait” = Pause, typically while going through a gate.

Read also:  Cheerfully challenged, Watson in training as executive ranch dog

Watson the Blind Dog - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521

Watson the Blind Dog - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521

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